Pogakar, who celebrates his 22nd birthday on Monday, the youngest winner since 1904, sealed his victory with a sensational performance in the Mountain Time Trials on the pension stage.
At the time it looked like his compatriot and longtime leader Primoz Roglik would claim the yellow jersey, but in a spectacular reversal it was Pogacar who won the stage and took the lead at 59 runs.
Sunday’s 21st round is traditionally a procession, with no attempt to wander until the last eight circuits around the French capital begin.
Pogakar was safe on his bicycle to cross the line with his UAE teammates in the victory as the stage was won by Sam Bennett of Ireland, the green jersey winner of Ireland, the second leg of his 2020 tour.
Bennett captured Slovakia’s Peter Sagan, a seven-time winner, and in some ways did so, with world champion Mads Pedersen taking second place on stage and Sagan in third place.
“I can’t tell you how excited I am,” Bennett said. “Green Jersey and the Champs-Elys ,es, the World Sprinting Championships. I never thought I would win this stage and it’s so special to do it in green.”
Triple for Pogacar
Not only did he claim the yellow jersey, but Pogacar also won the Polka.King Mountains Award and won the category for best young rider in his first attempt at the tour.
Roglik, who led from the ninth round in support of his powerful jumbo-visma team, had to settle for a second overall, with Australian legend Richie Port (Trek-Segafredo) finishing on stage.
Pogakar has struggled to win all of a sudden, losing more than a minute in the seventh round to re-enter the fray and eventually claim the yellow.
“It’s incredible, standing here at the top of the podium in Paris.” He said.
“I never thought I’d be here. It’s been a really exciting three weeks. I can’t describe how I feel at the moment.”
Due to the global pandemic, the race is being moved from its traditional July location, raising suspicions that it is being met with strict hygiene measures and mandatory coronavirus testing for riders and their team relationships. Will be.
The spectacle was also limited to the finishing areas, with only 5,000 allowed in the post-race podium area in Paris, usually thousands more.
So the organizers got some relief that after a 3,400 km hurdles, the remaining 146 riders started the final stage and hot-controversial sprint spin in Paris.